Dublin barman threatened at gunpoint as 'posh pub' raiders strike for third time
Two armed raiders are suspected of robbing their third south Dublin pub in less than a fortnight.
The latest incident happened at The Willows pub in Dundrum at 1am yesterday.
Sources said the same suspects are believed to have been involved in two previous closing-time robberies of upmarket bars this month alone.
It is understood that around €8,000 in cash was stolen in the latest of a spate of armed robberies that have caused major concern to publicans across the southside.
A 47-year-old barman was threatened at gunpoint, forced into a back office and tied up by the masked raiders, who made off with the significant cash haul.
Yesterday's raid at the Willows happened only three nights after a botched robbery at Ashtons in Clonskeagh, at 2am on Saturday.
The methods used in both raids bear striking similarities to an armed robbery at Bar 51 on Haddington Road, Ballsbridge, at 1am on May 3.
Each of the raids involved two disguised men armed with what appeared to be a gun and a knife, staff being restrained with cable ties and the robbery happening after closing time.
Willows owner Colm McWeeney told the Herald yesterday that the first thing he did when he arrived on the scene following the incident was to hug his barman who had been held up. Mr McWeeney has been running the pub for 14 years but it has been in his family for 26 years.
He told the Herald that he and the barman are still "shook up" over the incident, and he had yet to sleep after being alerted to what happened.
He said the money taken was not an issue, and all he was worried about was his employee's safety.
"The first thing I did was give him a hug and see if he was all right, the money was not my concern," he said.
"I know my barman is very shook up over it, so he's taking a bit of a break, just to let him get his head around things.
"Well, he was held up with a gun and a knife, so he's shook up. I'm just glad that he was all right.
"I have to say that I'm so shocked but I'm impressed with the guards. I can't believe how many of them were here so quickly.
"I'm still in shock over it all and just getting my own head around it."
The latest raid is being investigated by Dundrum gardai, who are expected to work with their colleagues at Donnybrook garda station who have been probing the other two robberies.
CCTV is expected to play a major part in the investigation as the criminals have not yet been identified.
Nobody has been injured in any of the incidents and no cash was taken in Saturday morning's armed robbery in Clonskeagh.
In that case, the frustrated raiders escaped with two bottles of vodka, plus two mobile phones belonging to the staff members aft er being unable to access cash.
However, the raid on Bar 51 on May 3 led to the criminals escaping with €2,500.